As reported by NewOrleans.com a lawsuit was filed yesterday in the United States District Court in East Baton Rouge Parish against the NFL & the Saints. The suit alleges 16 counts of misconduct, including Breach of Contract, Deceptive Advertising, Trademark Infringement and Dilution, Negligence, Conspiracy, and Fraud.
The company that filed the suit is a Louisiana company Who Dat, Inc., owned by brothers Sal and Steve Monistere, which says they hold the Louisiana and common law trademarks to the term WhoDat?
You can read the full complaint filing here
In a press statement, the Monisteres say they “have sought to find peaceful resolutions to many of the problems associated with the recent ruckus involving who owns WhoDat? and decided to wait until the end of the Saints season to file the complaint against the league.”
The statement also says the Monisteres “Had no choice but to seek redress in the courts in order to protect their rights as the first to mark it for trade and create a secondary meaning which qualifies them for ownership of the trademark right to Who Dat?” adding that “Their company also owns a Federal Trademark related to “Who Dat?” and has several filings with the United States Patent and Trademark Office, as well as the Louisiana Secretary of State’s office.”
The NFL claimed rights to the phrase until state Attorney General James D. “Buddy” Caldwell said it was within the public domain right before playoff time and the NFL seemed to back off.
Interestingly enough whodat.com is owned by neither party.
The domain name whodat.com is owned by a Who Dat Music Production out of Atlanta.
Who Dat?, Inc. uses the domain whodatstuff.com to sell their merchandise
The case is definitely an interesting read for any Saints fan.